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Crownpoint Woman Ordered to Pay Over Half a Million in Restitution to the Social Security Administration

June 08, 2023

From the U.S. Attorney’s Office, District of New Mexico:

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – Alexander M.M. Uballez, United States Attorney for the District of New Mexico, announced today that Marylynn Harry was sentenced to 5 years unsupervised probation and ordered to pay $551,436.00 in restitution to the Social Security Administration (SSA). Harry, 63, of Crownpoint, New Mexico, pleaded guilty on Feb. 8, 2023, to Social Security fraud, a felony offense under federal law.

According to the plea agreement and other court records, Harry’s father, Alfred Becenti, passed away in October of 1996. At the time of his death, Becenti was receiving Retirement Insurance Benefits payments from SSA. Following her father’s death, Harry made herself the co-owner of the bank account the payments were deposited into and obtained numerous debit cards linked to account. She concealed and did not notify SSA or the bank of her father’s death and continually made use of the deposited funds. Over the course of twenty-five years, Harry fraudulently collected $551,436.00. When agents from SSA Office of the Inspector General confronted her, Harry quickly admitted wrongdoing.

The SSA Office of the Inspector General investigated this case. Assistant United States Attorney Patrick E. Cordova prosecuted the case.

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